Archive for the ‘Ink’ Category

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What Prompts You To Journal?

01/18/2017

What prompts you to write in your journal? Many of us start a new one in January which makes this a good month to examine and strengthen what works.

Fountain pen people may do it just for the joy of using a favorite pen or a pretty new ink. Sometimes it’s the luxurious feel of a perfectly tuned nib sliding across velvety paper. A touch of the hedonist may drive us to such pursuits, but it is good, clean fun.

It doesn’t have to be just words that make it on paper. A doodler can use a glyph or squiggle to fill lines and spaces. Watercolor may come into play, but glued on bits of ephemera count as well. Stickers, tickets and postage stamps can inspire lengthy entries or at least make the pages look satisfyingly full.

But what prompts the writer, the serious writer, to put pen to paper? What inspires that flow of words? An experience of the day, something in the news, an errant thought? Do you have a book of prompts or a theme to explore? Really, how do you do it and what do you do it with?

Writing in my journal can bring out the minimalist in me. I like using a light to medium weight pen with an ink to match the subject or something very neutral that won’t detract. Recently, four pens have graced my long sessions: two Pilot Metropolitan Mediums, a Lamy Studio Fine, and a Platinum Nice Medium. The Lamy is a little heavy for more than four or five pages, but the others are good for miles of adventure. Current inks are Iroshizuku ama-iro, Pilot Blue-Black, J. Herbin Terre de Feu and Sailor Tokiwa-matsu in the second Pilot Metro.

Today my journals include one from Paper for Fountain Pens with Tomoe River Paper, Staples Arc, a new Muji notebook and a (Midori) Traveler’s Notebook, most often a #013.

Any of these tools can prompt me to journal. Four pens, inks and journals would seem like enough variety for an inkophile. Or maybe not. The Stillman & Birn Epsilon, Stipula Verde Muschiato, and the lovely, lovely Platinum #3776 music nib are ready to go. Oh, look at that. Ku-jaku just waved at me with a charming, beauty-queen-riding-in-a-parade gesture. So much for my minimalist rotation. Is this a hopeless addiction or what!

 

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My Gear For The New Year

01/06/2017

Ink, pen and paper:

Sketching Kit:

Watercolor Supplies:

Accessories:

Want to purchase any of these items? Here ya go!

Ink, pen and paper: Pilot BBk,  Noodler’s Black, Diamine Mediterranean Blue, J. Herbin Cafe des Iles, Sailor Tokiwa-matsu, Stipula Calamo Sapphron, Stillman & Birn  Zeta Sketchbook, Tomoe River Paper from Paper for Fountainpens, Quo Vadis Plan & Note journal, Pilot Metropolitan, Platinum #3776 Century M, TWSBI Diamond 580 1.1, Staples ArcTraveler’s Notebook 013

Sketching Kit: Staedtler Mars Lumograph pencils, Pentel Hi-Polymer Eraser, Prismacolor Kneaded Eraser, Lowe-Cornell tortillions, Stillman & Birn Epsilon Sketchbook, Faber-Castell Sharpener

Watercolor Kit: Martin Mijello Airtight Watercolor 18-Well Blue Palette, travel box, Stillman & Birn Beta Sketchbook, Arches 300 gsm watercolor paper, Schut Aquarelbloc 300gsm watercolor paper, Monaco Travel Case, Traveler’s Notebook 012

Brushes: Silver Brush Black Velvet Script #4, Round #8, 3/4″ Flat, Escoda Versatil Rigger #10, Isabey Petit Gris #0, SAA Gold Round #10

Tube paints for a watercolor mixing triad: Daniel Smith Cobalt Blue, Winsor & Newton Aureolin, Winsor & Newton Permanent Rose.

Watercolor Metal Travel Box with colors especially good for mixing: American Journey Aureolin, American Journey Quinacridone Burnt Orange, Winsor & Newton Winsor Red, Winsor & Newton Permanent Rose, Daniel Smith Cobalt Blue, American Journey Phthalo Blue, Daniel Smith Phthalo Green (BS)

Accessories: Coccoina glue stick, American Crafts washi tape, Bigelow Earl Grey Green Tea, Numi Chocolate Pu-erh Tea, Sadaf Special Blend Tea with Earl Grey.

 

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First Sunday Reads Of The Year

01/01/2017

Grab a cuppa and enjoy a few…

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First Take On A Few Products

12/24/2016

Busy, busy, busy here, but still moving forward on a few reviews. First take on several products:

  • Stillman & Birn Sketchbooks with soft covers are as good as it gets especially for those with arthritis and other hand issues.
  • Pilot MR Metropolitan 1.0 Calligraphy nib is an italic that proved to be a dry writer with Noodler’s Dostoyevsky. Will try either Pilot Blue-Black or an Iroshizuku next to see if either improves performance.
  • Lamy Studio Fine arrived with two very visible body flaws. Then I removed the cap to discover the edge of the barrel that meets the cap is ridiculously sharp and jagged. So much for quality control.
  • Coccoina adhesive smells like marzipan and is delightful to use.
  • Silver Brush Monaco Travel Case is somewhat large, but will hold eight brushes plus lots of additional tools. Looks durable, too.

There are at least a dozen inks to review along with several brands of paper plus two Fountain Pen Revolution flex models. The next few months are going to be very busy indeed.

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New Faves For 2016

12/18/2016

This past year I made some new friends. Links are to sources for the products.

Art Supplies

  • Silver Brush Black Velvet watercolor brushes – Acquired several this year. Supple, retain shape very well and hold lots of fluid.
  • Daniel Smith Prussian Blue and Transparent Red Oxide watercolors – Good additions to my transparent palette.
  • Aureolin by Winsor & Newton or Daniel Smith – Excellent yellow combined with Permanent Rose or Quinacridone Rose and Cobalt Blue for mixing a full range of colors. This has become my “Less Is More” triad and a staple for my mini kit. (h/t Pat Weaver)
  • Pentel Touch Brush Tip Felt Pen – Good at line variation whether for writing or drawing.
  • Uniball Air marker – More durable than a felt marker and glides effortlessly across the page. Makes my hand happy.
  • Buddha board – Great tool for practicing strokes without wasting ink, paint or paper.

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Ink And The Pantone 2017 Color Of The Year

12/15/2016

Pantone has selected Greenery as the 2017 Color of the Year. Which ink do you think best matches it?

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Iroshizuku Tsuki-yo And Prussian Blue

12/02/2016

It wasn’t the plan, but while playing with Daniel Smith Prussian Blue watercolor, I discovered that on natural white paper, it’s nearly a perfect match for Iroshizuku tsuki-yo ink. The paper warms the colors slightly as is my preference.

The doodles initiated a practice session for two seldom used brushes. Then swatches and slender lines followed. Finally, squiggles and tiny trees emerged. Once the page was filled, the hunt for a matching ink was on. There might be better matches, but of the inks on hand, tsuki-yo came the closest. As always, playing with paint and ink was good, clean fun.

Available at Amazon:

Daniel Smith Prussian Blue Watercolor

Iroshizuku tsuki-yo

Princeton Neptune 4750 1/4″ square wash brush

Escoda Versatil #2 Rigger brush

Langton Prestige 140# watercolor paper

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